Oh, the memories this dredges up. Although my kids didn’t have difficulty understanding their homework, attention issues and poor time management skills made for endless homework battles while my kids were growing up. So if your child has a learning disability, poor or declining grades, poor time management skills, or difficulty understanding his or her homework, realize, you’re not alone. The solution to the problem may be a tutor. The question, however, is how to find a tutor for your child who’s qualified, reliable, and that you can trust. Also, what do you do if hiring a tutor doesn’t fit your budget? Today there are many options.
How to find a tutor for your child
A good place to start is by talking to your child’s teacher and the school administrator. They might be able to recommend a tutor in your community or online resources to help your child.
Also, chances are one of your child’s friends has a tutor. So ask other parents if there’s a tutor they can recommend or if they have any advice on how to find a tutor for your child.
Another option is to go online and search for tutors in your city. You’ll likely find a couple of local tutoring companies. These often offer on-site tutoring, and some may offer in-home tutoring as well.
There are also many websites devoted to helping parents find tutors. Takelessons.com provides a searchable database of tutors. Just enter the school subject and your zip code to find tutors in your area. You’ll see tutors’ star ratings and their fees per session.
Another source is Care.com, which connects various service professionals, including tutors, with those seeking services. Experience in tutoring varies widely, so be sure to check their reviews.
Online tutoring is another popular choice. But bear in mind, it isn’t the right thing for every child. So be sure to do your research. Many online tutoring companies receive fair to mediocre reviews at best, and the costs for online tutoring aren’t always consistent with quality.
If tutoring isn’t in your budget, you still have several options.
The first place to start is with your child’s school. Although the No Child Left Behind Act is now defunct, some schools still offer one-on-one tutoring programs for eligible students. Many schools also offer after-school group tutoring where kids stay after school to work on their homework with a teacher available to assist. Some teachers also offer after-school tutoring for their students.
If tutoring isn’t available at your child’s school, ask trusted family members, neighbors, and friends how to find a tutor for your child or if they can help. You might be surprised to discover someone you know would be very enthused to help your struggling child.
Another option is to contact your local high school and community college. Students majoring in certain subjects or teaching may be required to perform a certain number of hours tutoring. For that reason, students often offer to tutor for free.
There’s also the popular Khan Academy website, which offers free online video tutorials for students of all levels. Visit https://www.khanacademy.org/
What to look for in a tutor
There are several factors to consider when looking for a tutor for your child.
Is the tutor qualified? Your best bet is to look for someone with a teaching degree since tutoring requires skills not everyone possesses. For younger students, as long as the tutor has a teaching degree, specialization in the particular subject in which your child is struggling isn’t necessary. From high school and beyond though, you should look for a tutor with expertise in the particular subjects in which your child needs help.
Does the tutor have the right personality? First, a tutor should be patient, empathetic, positive, passionate, creative, and fun. These are important characteristics to ensure your child can learn from the tutor and walk away with self-confidence. Also, the tutor’s personality should be a good fit for your child. You want a tutor who can connect with your child and vice versa.
Is the tutor flexible? Each child has their own best learning style whether it’s visual, aural, physical, verbal, logical, or any combination of these. In addition, some kids are solitary learners whereas others are social learners who enjoy learning in groups. Look for a setting and tutor that fits your child’s style.
Does the tutor have excellent references? When using an online tutoring service, you’ll often find reviews from previous clients. Look for those with overall high ratings and positive comments. If you find your tutor offline or don’t see a significant number of reviews, ask for several references. Bear in mind though, the references a tutor provides might not be an entirely accurate depiction of their character and experience. So use due diligence for your child’s safety and to ensure you’re paying for quality service.
by Kimberly Blaker
Posted: January 8, 2018
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